Quantum Algorithms
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
 
D-Wave Systems
MIT Technology Review has a short profile of D-Wave Systems, a company trying to become the first to sell quantum computers. The company's estimates for having a real product differ from what conventional wisdom would have: "The company plans to complete a prototype device by the end of 2006; a version capable of solving commercial problems could be ready by 2008, says president and CEO Geordie Rose. [...] D-Wave's first computer won't be able to accomplish the most widely touted payoff of quantum computing: factoring the extremely large numbers at the heart of modern cryptographic systems exponentially faster than any known computer. It will, however, be ideally suited to solving problems like the infamous traveling-salesman problem, in which a salesman searches for the optimal route among cities." From the article I don't understand their architecture at all; apparently instead of using entanglement, they use quantum tunneling, so I'm not sure in what sense their system will be a quantum computer.

[Update 2005-06-23] The Quantum Pontiff, reining in hyperbole like a black hole in a saddle shaped universe, pontificates that the D-Wave system will merely run quantum adiabatic algorithms.
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